Friday, March 28, 2014

The Character of Laban

Today I read 1 Nephi 3, the very well known story of Nephi attempting to get the Brass Plates.  I have often wondered why Laban, clearly a wicked man, was so attached to the Brass Plates?  I mean he accuses Laman of being a robber and throws him out of his house, then he sends his servants to kill Nephi and his brothers when he sees their wealth.  So he is clearly not a man of God, so why was he so attached to the record?  Could it just have been petty pride?  The old I have something you want so I’m not going to give it to you act?  Or was there something else attached to it?

I really don’t have the answer and it makes me wonder about Laban and what he thought about the Brass Plates and the genealogy of his fathers.  Was he concerned about where he came from?  I doubt it.  Maybe his heart was hardened just to help Nephi rely upon the Lord and trust in him.  To teach him how to be more spiritual.  I think it certainly helped Nephi for sure, but was that really the reason?  I don’t know.  I do know that Nephi was very resilient and did not give up on the commandment the Lord had given him.  He gives us a great example to follow.  Until tomorrow.

1 comment:

  1. So many times sacred things become status symbols. Laban seems to have inherited more than the plates. He had his own treasury. His heritage was probably something to brag about--no less than a proud Nauvoo lineage. He had been out with the elders. So his riches, status, and prestige were tied up with the plates. Lehi was related. How many people gluttonous with power, as Laban seems to be, want to share or acknowledge others as just as worthy, maybe more so than they? He lusted that which gave him prestige, power, and riches. He seemed to be Laman and Lemuel's ideal man. Perhaps he had been some form of benefactor for the educational institution for Lehi's oldest sons. Regardless, it is plain he had social standing in the community and the plates were probably just a part of the collection of wealth and substance that Laban seemed to think defined the man.